Saturday, January 17, 2009

[day 17 ... january 17]

One of our favorite neighborhood outings is to walk to see the goats, Harry and Lucy, who live a few blocks down the road. We live in a rural area known for horses, but people also keep the occasional goats and chickens. Lucky us, we have some friendly goats close by who love the attention of visitors. The family who owns them has several young children, but of course, goats are always up for more company.

Often we bring a few branches from our yard (they love fir needles), and then we pick up some more greenery next to their pasture to feed them as well. The kids could do this by the hour!

Today, Niall worked for quite awhile making a "concoction" for them of fir branches wrapped around several other kinds of leaves to make a sort of "bowl." Harry and Lucy weren't as impressed as they should have been, but they nibbled on it politely. I think they've had an abundance of greens lately, with all the downed branches in our area from the recent weather events, so aren't as eager for food as usual.

After we spend some time with the goats, we walk down to the end of the road - another quarter mile or so - and then turn around and walk back up the hill, past the goats again, and onward home. If we're up for a longer adventure, we take one of the trails that lead past the road and loop back around on another trail. With so many equestrians around, there are lots of horse trails that are also fine walking trails, and we have our favorites of course. In the summer, we take longer walks. But these winter days are so short (and chilly), unless we happen to get out early and have lots of energy, we stick to shorter stints and call it good. At least we get some fresh air, and the goats get some extra love and greens to nibble.

The sun through the trees was spectacular. We've had so much rain and fog lately, even a glimpse of the sun is welcome. Today we had an afternoon of splendor. Who could stay inside?

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